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The topic this year is making hit records, which is becoming somewhat of a rare commodity nowadays.

WHEELS & DEALS: THE LAST BLOWOUT?

Two Weeks From Now, Rodel Will Be in Austin, Checking Out the Talent at the Four Seasons Lounge
By Rodel Delfin

South by Southwest 2007 is just a couple of weeks away, and among the sea of showcases, parties, dinners, meetings and schmoozing, there will be industry panels. Yours truly will once again be moderating the Saturday A&R panel, featuring a host of your favorite weasels. The topic this year is making hit records, which is becoming somewhat of a rare commodity nowadays. Confirmed are hot-shot producer Brian Howes, Warner Bros.Craig Aaronson, producer/A&R veteran David Bendeth, Interscope’s Mark Williams, Roadrunner’s Ron Burman and Epic’s Mike Flynn. The above cast of characters has collectively signed, produced, A&R’d and/or co-written with the following hit acts: Hinder, My Chemical Romance, Chris Daughtry, Breaking Benjamin, Hawthorne Heights, No Doubt, Gwen Stefani, Nickelback and The Fray, to name a few. It’s an impressive group of pros, but not as impressive as the bevy of pros who will be hanging out at the Four Seasons lounge, preying on industry schmoozers (if you know what we mean)…

EMI REVISTED: We were a little off on our mention of private equity company Kravis Kohlberg Roberts in last week’s column. However, if we were writing a financial column, we would have been giving you an early tip on KKR and Texas Pacific Group’s buyout bid for utility company TXU, which reportedly is the largest private equity buyout in history. But we won’t bore you with mundane Wall Street reports. Meanwhile, industry insiders did tip us off that a couple of private equity companies were in talks with EMI concerning an acquisition, with fingers pointing towards KKR. However, the N.Y. Post’s Peter Lauria did eventually report that EMI CEO Eric Nicoli did speak with Apollo Management and Permira about revisiting a potential offer. But be advised that the Financial Times reported last year that KKR and Goldman Sachs approached EMI about a possible buyout after the group’s failed merger talks with Warner Music Group. And KKR also made a bid for Clear Channel’s radio holdings last year, thus further substantiating the company’s interest in owning music properties. Could a bidding derby erupt from private equity suitors for the music group? Stay tuned…

QUALITY OVER QUANTITY: Not that we want to pat ourselves on the back, but we only mentioned two acts in last week’s column, and both now have offers from labels and publishers, respectively. And these were legit plugs (i.e., we didn’t get paid off). In fact, it’s been awhile since we got a Fed Ex package with some greens. What up?... Finally, highly sought-after Dangerbird Records act Silversun Pickups is finalizing a worldwide, ex-North American deal with Michael Goldstone at Sire Records. The Jeff Castelaz-run Dangerbird retains the rights for the band in the U.S. and the rest of North America (i.e., Canada)… BUZZIN’: Esmee Denters, David Massey and James Diener… Hit me up: [email protected]

BUZZ/GIGS:
ASCAP SXSW SHOWCASE
Wed., March 14, 8:00 p.m., Dirty Dog
BMI SXSW SHOWCASE Thurs., March 15, 8:00 p.m., Club de Ville
SESAC SXSW SHOWCASE Fri., March 16, 8:00 p.m., Eternal

NEAR TRUTHS:
DESERT SONG
Give I.B. a bottle of water. (4/12a)
AARON BAY-SCHUCK AND TOM CORSON: THE HITS INTERVIEW (PART ONE)
Bunny's hoppin' again. (4/12a)
COACHELLA: SETS TO SEE AND PLACES TO BE
Your desert deets are here. (4/12a)
SONG REVENUE: SONY
HITS FAST FORWARD
Walkin' tall in vintage fashion (4/12a)
THE COUNT: SUPERSTARS TO SURPRISE AT COACHELLA?
The latest tidbits from the vibrant live sector (4/12a)
THE NEW UMG
Gosh, we hope there are more press releases.
TIKTOK BANNED!
Unless the Senate manages to make this whole thing go away, that is.
THE NEW HUGE COUNTRY ACT
No, not that one.
TRUMP'S CAMPAIGN PLAYLIST
Now 100% unlicensed!
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